Virginia arrived at UGA in 1967 as a faculty member. She was one of the first women hired as a full-time professor to teach leadership and develop curriculum and policy courses in what is now the Mary Frances Early College of Education. Beginning with small, recurring gifts, Virginia began loyally supporting many College of Education initiatives and scholarships during her time as a faculty member. In 2004, on her mother’s 100th birthday, she established The Mary Sartalamacchia Macagnoni Qualitative Research Award in her honor. The College of Education celebrated Mary with an honorary degree in that same year.
Virginia’s enthusiasm for UGA didn’t stop with the College of Education. The Willson Center for Humanities and Arts and the UGA Performing Arts Center have both benefited from her generosity and involvement. She attended the opening of the Performing Arts Center in 1996 and has spent countless hours since then enjoying its programming. Virginia has both given to and established lectureships, graduate awards, and scholarships to support students who enrich their education through travel and participation in conferences. She champions student aid, particularly the purchase of necessary equipment for students to succeed in their programs of study, showing that she values the critical role that the humanities play in education and global competency. Her planned gifts support professional orchestral performance, scholarship and awards, all of which expand the future for cultural education and academic success at UGA.